I first met Stuart Sharp at Abbey Road Studios, where I was conducting a film score. He gave me a demo tape of music he’d created with the help of musician Anthony Wade. During that time, music that had been whirring around in his head was transformed into an electronic version of his dream symphony. I have to admit that I found Stuart’s request to record his score with the London Philharmonia Orchetstra, impossible to countenance. He was oblivious to the fact that such an undertaking was the domain of film and music moguls, or firmly established composers. Some years earlier, he was a penniless non-musician living in a hostel for the homeless! I am embarrassed to say the tape lay on my desk for several weeks. In the interim, I pondered over his unbelievable courage and determination, but could not imagine that his music being of a standard acceptable to one of the world’s greatest orchestras; and I did not relish the call to break the bad news. However, very late one night I put aside an hour to make my critique.
The first few bars grabbed my attention to the point where I leaned in closer to the speakers in total surprise and amazement. The piece was full of anguish, torment, pain and inspired musical passion. I felt his heart laid bare before me. I learned about his bereavement and subsequent motivation to compose this wonderful symphony, which had me in tears long before the music ended. I have to admit that I was stunned, even more so knowing it was only a demo! I visualised the finished, orchestrated score recorded by the Philharmonia Orchestra. However, the cold facts remained that financing such an enormous challenge was Stuart’s responsibility. A few years later saw us at Sony's Whitfield Street Recording Studios in London for the ‘big day’
I will never forget a huge, heart-felt round of applause given by the musicians after the first sight-read through. In my experience, such an ovation was unique. 'Stuart’s achievements are akin to me writing a book on brain surgery – I know where my brain is, and what it’s supposed to do, but I’d have no idea of how or where to start.' Stuart has gone on to compose and record more great pieces, ranging from Classical to Rock ‘n’ Roll. Each time he sends me a new recording, I smile at his courage, determination and sheer strength of mind. His story goes far beyond music, into the realms of achieving the impossible; with faith, sacrifice, and an unswerving belief in oneself.